Storm Chasing Fever - Blog - Davis Vantage Pro 2 Weather Station Review
Davis Vantage Pro 2 Weather Station Review
Jun 08, 2014
The Davis Vantage Pro 2 is a durable weather station that provides any weather enthusiast with valuable meteorological data that is track-able, accurate and most importantly fairly durable. I will break down my experience with the Vantage Pro 2 and list a review of the key features of the device.
I've had the Davis Vantage Pro 2 since 2008 and it's lived up to the expectations. At first I had it mounted above a high wooden deck about 50-60 feet away from the console, located in my bedroom. No doubt the wireless feature is a big plus and I've never had any connectivity issues during bad weather.
The station comes with a solar panel that provides, in my experience, three to four more months worth of power. For example:
Battery only; without direct solar radiation: 5 - 6 months
Battery and with direct solar radiation: 8-10 months
Solar Radiation without battery: Works during daylight hours only.
Let's get into the key features of the Davis Vantage Pro 2.
Anemometer: I was looking forward to using this key feature, but I was left disappointed. I originally had placed the anemometer about 20 feet above a wooden slab (see photo) but the wind speeds never seemed to match the actual outside conditions. Our place of residence experienced a severe thunderstorm a few years back and the storm easily produced winds at least 40-50 mph. Yet, the highest wind speed the anemometer recorded was 17 mph! The problem wasn't the anemometer itself, but the nearby trees blocked the air flow. To have an actual accurate wind measurement, the anemometer will need to be well away from trees, buildings and placed high above the ground.
Barometer: This has been very accurate, but the results tend to lose its accuracy over time. You'll need to simply verify the barometric reading and re-calibrate. I usually do this once a year.
Temperature: The temperature reading is the most important for any weather enthusiast. I've found the temperatures above 90 degrees can sometimes start to exaggerate due to warmth from decks, buildings, etc. You may need to re-calibrate the temperature once-a-year to receive a 100% accurate reading.
Dew Point: I love the dew point temperature and the Davis Weather Vantage Pro 2 station doesn't disappoint. Of note, during hot, humid days, the dew point temperature reading can sometimes fluctuate up and down around in a short amount of time.
Heat Index: The Heat Index can be inflated due to warm buildings and decks, but it's usually accurate most of the time.
Wind Chill: I usually don't use the Wind Chill feature because the anemometer is required.
Humidity In: The inside humidity can provide you insight of the humidity inside your home. Usually between 30-50% is the rule of thumb.
Humidity Out: I rarely use this indicator and primarily focus on the dew point temperature.
Daily Rain: Provides the amount of precipitation for the day.
Rain Storm: Provides the amount of precipitation for a specific storm, usually over the course of 24-72 hours.
Rain Rate: This is my favorite indicator on the Vantage Pro 2. During summertime thunderstorms, rainfall can be plentiful, but knowing how hard the rain is falling, this indicator provides you a lasting impression on how much water vapor is in the atmosphere and how strong the storm is.
Rain Month and Year: The console is able to save the data of how much precipitation has fallen during the past 24 months. You can go back to past years to see how much rain has fallen. Pretty cool.
Durability: The Davis Weather Vantage Pro 2 is very durable. It can be exposed to a range of weather conditions and work perfectly. I've had mine since 2008 and has survived through 124 temperature degree range.
Highest Temperature Recorded: 107 degrees (may have been inflated due to wood deck).
Low Temperature Recorded: - 17 degrees
The console comes with 6 batteries that usually last about 6 months without the power cable. The weather station comes with a small battery that also usually last about 6 months without the solar radiation as mentioned above.
There are other features/accessories you can buy to add to the station (solar radiation shield, etc). I'll probably replace the station once something new comes out, but overall it's been worth the money.